How to Manage Consignment Inventory: Common Mistakes, Best Practices and Choosing the Right Technology
By Ron Schroeder, VP of Supply Chain, eTurns When distributors stock and manage inventory onsite with their ...Read Post
For most distributors, growing wallet share among existing customers is a consistent goal – and a constant struggle.
But with automated inventory replenishment, distributors can build loyalty and boost existing-customer revenue by as much as 30 percent – without the struggle.
Here are some strategies to maximize each customer’s revenue potential:
Build strong relationships. That starts with knowing the customer’s history with you – not just what they order, but when. You also want to know whether they have called with concerns or difficulties – and how those calls were handled. Your CRM system can put this information at your team’s fingertips, and a system like eTurns TrackStock will provide real-time visibility into inventory usage.
Provide value-added services. Of course, you deliver a quality product with great customer service. But to really set yourself apart and build customer loyalty, it helps to provide your customers with a little extra. A good starting point is to use eTurns TrackStock Replenish to capture orders 10 times faster than through any website by using your phone’s camera function to simply scan to replenish. By not writing down part numbers and faxing POs, everybody benefits from the savings in procurement time and effort.
Automated inventory replenishment, like that offered by eTurns TrackStock Manage, helps you put an electronic moat around your customers. When your customer’s inventory is replenished automatically, they don’t have to go shopping online – where they could potentially discover a competitor’s offer. Your customers benefit because they no longer risk stock-outs, or the added expense of unnecessary overstocking.
Identify where you can consolidate customer spend. eTurns TrackStock Manage also can provide insight into all of a customer’s inventory, not just the products they buy from you. That benefits your customer, because they now can track consumption of all parts on any job by simply scanning the part number – regardless of where that part came from. So, the customer now has one access point for tracking parts and labor, no matter how many trucks that customer may be operating. That is value add for your customer, and opportunity for you.
The opportunity comes because when you know what else your customer is buying, you can begin to effectively compete for that business. What’s more, you’ll have a distinct advantage in that competition, because buying more of their needed items from you means decreased procurement costs for the customer. Not only does your customer save money, but consolidated ordering and shipping means, instead of many packages from multiple suppliers, they will get fewer shipments from a handful of suppliers.
And, every product your customer buys from you then becomes part of the automated inventory system – with all the advantages that offers to both you and your customer.
The eTurns TrackStock Manage app offers distributors an additional edge: Just as the system places automated orders to replenish stock, it also automates billing and collection, which speeds up collections.
These steps lead to satisfied, loyal customers. And, distributors who fully use the capabilities offered through automated inventory systems, such as eTurns TrackStock, tell us it’s definitely worth the effort.